Posts Tagged: The Guardian

The Rise of the Mega-Novel

By

Serial novels are nothing new, especially in genre fiction designed to keep readers shelling out money for the next phase of a story. But the sudden, rapid success of fantasy genre series like George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones and the adaptation of Tolkien’s hobbit epics to the big screen has meant publishers want to cash in on the double-XL titles.

...more

Before Twain Was Twain

By

Newspaper journalist Samuel Clemens would eventually go on to become novelist Mark Twain. But, Samuel Clemens was something of a story writer too. At the Guardian, Nicky Woolf reports that a scholar at the University of California has discovered and authenticated letters stories written by Twain while he still worked at the San Francisco Dramatic Chronicle.

...more

Breaking Silence

By

For the Guardian, Nicole Lee reports on Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s closing lecture at the PEN World Voices festival, where the Nigerian author expressed concern for the “dangerous silencing” of an American culture that “fears causing offense.” In addition, Adichie encouraged a culture of “listening,” and spoke of the boundaries between writing fiction and contributing to public conversations surrounding contemporary social issues.

...more

Thank You, Hypertext

By

The book was, we can now see, crying out for the invention of the web, which would enable the holding of multiple domains of knowledge in the mind at one time that a proper reading requires.

At the Guardian, Billy Mills looks at the love match that is the Internet and Finnegans Wake and has good tidings: hypertext may make the formerly unreadable novel readable.

...more

Impending Death of a Dictionary

By

Much like the parochial vocabulary it strives to catalogue, the Dictionary of American Regional English is in danger of extinction. A stopgap crowdfunding campaign is currently open to support the project in the short term, but the long-term forecast for the entity protecting such gems as “flumadiddle” (nonsense), “slippery jims” (pickles), and “rantum scooting” (going out with no definite destination) is grim.

...more

The Dystopian Present

By

For the Guardian, Megan Quibell argues that climate change has changed dystopian fiction, as many recent dystopian works rely on a “catalyst” that stems from “the destruction of the environment.” The result is a series of books that “hammers home” the reality of climate change, which is “not something for the distant future.”

...more

Curating Life

By

You might say that our blog offers curated literary articles. That might sound pretentious, but not nearly as pretentious as a curated salad, a curated college application, or a curated wine list. The Guardian takes a look at the use, overuse, and history of curation:

The idea of the contemporary curator originates with the conceptual art movement of the 1960s.

...more

Buying Online Is Like Shoplifting

By

British novelist David Nicholls believes that book buyers who browse their local shops and then buy books online are basically shoplifters, he tells the Guardian. The author of Us and other novels, Nicholls is a former bookseller himself. He delivered the keynote speech at the London Book Fair’s Digital Minds conference where he lamented that, “a town without a bookshop is missing something.”

...more

LitHub Launches

By

Lithub, a new web endeavor from Electric Literature with partnerships between publishers, magazines, journals, and existing websites, launched yesterday with the aim of becoming a portal at the center of the literary world. The Guardian caught up with site editor Jonny Diamond who explained how the website hopes to operate:

“The very basic quid pro quo is an ad in exchange for a feature or excerpt.

...more

How to Read in the Modern World

By

There are many distractions in the modern world like television and listicles. As a result, people aren’t reading in the same way they did a half century ago, opines Oliver Burkeman at the Guardian. All is not lost. Aside from carrying a book around all the time, Burkeman suggests turning reading into a ritual:

…such ritualistic behaviour helps us “step outside time’s flow” into “soul time”.

...more

The Consequences of “Prize Culture”

By

Over at the Guardian, Rachel Cooke reflects on her experience as a judge for this year’s Folio prize and shares what reading the eighty submissions revealed to her about the state of British and American fiction:

The British social history novel seems doomed so far as our prize culture goes; impossible to imagine a writer such as David Lodge enjoying the same career today.

...more

The Mystery Of Misleading Titles

By

For the Guardian, Moira Redmond considers the prevalence of “misleading” book titles. The article references a number of well-known texts including Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping, which Redmond suggests is “sublimely about non-housekeeping.” However, Moira argues that “allusive titles” are not without merit: “They can be intriguing and draw you in.

...more

The Original Copycat

By

Tim Youd has recently undertaken the task of reproducing Kingsley Amis’s Lucky Jim, but the Guardian says the idea of copying classic novels is not so original; Pierre Menard, a character in a Borges story, did it first:

Although the words themselves were exactly the same, Pierre Menard’s fragmentary Quixote was judged to be “subtler than that of Cervantes”.

...more